Singapore Medical Group - UOB Kay Hian 2021-01-11: Potential Offer On The Cards; Valuation Still Attractive


Singapore Medical Group - Potential Offer On The Cards; Valuation Still Attractive

Singapore Medical Group - Potential offer on the cards?

  • Singapore Medical Group (SGX:5OT) had announced on 18 Dec 20 it was in discussions with a third party regarding a possible transaction of the company’s shares. See Singapore Medical Group Announcements. The discussions are preliminary and there is no certainty or assurance that such discussions will progress beyond the current stage or that any transaction will materialise as a result of such discussions.
  • Recent offers for healthcare peers including ISEC Healthcare (SGX:40T) and Health Management International (SGX:588) were done at 26-31x implied forward P/E. Singapore Medical Group is asset-light, and currently trades at 17x 2020F P/E and 12x 2021F P/E although its 2020 earnings were impacted by COVID-19. Assuming its patient load recovers to 80-85% of pre-COVID levels in 2021, Singapore Medical Group would still be trading at a discount to recent offer premiums as well as peers’ average of 17x 2021F PE.


  • CHA Healthcare, Singapore Medical Group’s strategic partner, had previously purchased vendor shares from certain shareholders at $0.605/share while also investing about S$10m through a convertible loan at $0.423/share in Feb 19 but this was subsequently not exercised and repaid.
  • CHA Healthcare is part of the CHA Group, one of the largest and most diversified private healthcare service groups in Asia, and is headquartered in Seoul. In 2018, the group had a rights issue at S$0.48/share. Currently, insiders hold some 46% of the group.

Pent-up demand.

  • In its 1H20 results, Singapore Medical Group's management noted pent-up demand for elective medical services such as health screening and aesthetics treatment after the circuit breaker. Specialist outpatient clinic attendees in Singapore had also increased y-o-y in Sep and Oct 20, which indicates the recovery in patient load and demand for medical services.
  • Based on our channel checks, we believe demand for elective medical services remained robust in 2H20. This could be likely due to the diversion of travel expenditure to healthcare expenditure, as well as an increasingly health-conscious population amid COVID-19. This would likely support earnings of healthcare players, such as SMG, in 2H20.

Solid organic growth.

  • Singapore Medical Group continued to adopt organic growth initiatives in 2H20, with the onboarding of a new IVF doctor in 3Q20, a new O&G doctor in 4Q20 and the opening of a new Women’s Health and Paediatric clinic in the eastern region of Singapore in 4Q20.

We raise Singapore Medical Group's 2020-21 net profit forecasts by 4% and 12% respectively.

  • We factor in a faster recovery in patient load, given the pent-up demand in medical services in recent months. While foreign patients are still lacking, we opine that the stronger-than-expected recovery in demand for medical services could lift patient loads to 80-85% of pre-COVID levels in 2021.

Singapore Medical Group - Valuation & Recommendation

Lucas Teng UOB Kay Hian Research | https://research.uobkayhian.com/ 2021-01-11
SGX Stock Analyst Report BUY MAINTAIN BUY 0.46 UP 0.370